Sunday, November 27, 2011

ANSWERS - Submarine Mystery Questions (11-22-2011)

For the accompanying background and related links provided with last week's questions, please refer to the original 11-22 post.

ANSWERS:

1. In which country with nuclear powered submarines are even those subs barred from all of its mercantile ports? ANS: The UK. source

2. When did President George Herbert Walker Bush first announce his initiative to offload all tactical nuclear weapons from all surface ships and submarines? ANS: 27 Sept 1991. source (pdf).

3. In what country was a bomb set off at a local square superficially injuring 3 sailors from USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) after its CO stated, "I cannot confirm or deny that possibility", referring to conveying nearly 100 nuclear weapons? ANS: Chile (Valparaiso) 1 Nov 1990. [ibid]

4. Based on official U.S. Navy documents, what other country alleged that a U.S. destroyer had loaded nuclear weapons aboard prior to arriving in their port during 1988? ANS: DENMARK, 16 Sept 1995. [ibid]

5. Submarines have not been the only U.S. Navy vessels impacted by nuclear concerns. Earlier, a U.S. destroyer had been denied tug-boat assistance into an Australian port when members of the Fireman and Deckhands Union objected to servicing a nuclear armed vessel. Identify the destroyer (name and hull number), the year, and the port. ANS: USS Ingersoll (DD-990), 17 Sept 1988, New Castle, Australia. [ibid]

6. How many of you visited Naples on an SSN; your SSN, no doubt, anchored out. Does Italy still bar nuclear subs from docking in ports? ANS: Yes, although requiring anchoring out of nuclear vessels since the mid 1900s, since the Italian nuclear power referendum of November 1987, Italy has reaffirmed its commitment to remaining a nuclear free zone. source

Submarines are always silent and strange.


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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Tributes for Thanksgiving



"Though serving beyond sight of others, submariners remain on very influential minds."
- Juan Caruso Davenport


A Secretary of the Navy once said, his biggest fear was a phone call announcing that one of our nuclear armed submarines — a "boomer" — had not come home. - It was Former Senator John Warner (R-Va.), Peter Huessy, June 16, 2010, Nuclear Deterrence: Painting a Bull's Eye On the US.

.................................***********

Many thanks to all of our active duty men and women, and especially to those who serve today beyond sight and communication of their families and loved ones, our submariners.


Submarines are always silent and strange.





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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Submarine Mystery Questions (11-22-2011)

'Join the Navy and See the World' ... Maybe not so much anymore...

Background

Article23 - Foreign nuclear-powered ships and ships carrying nuclear or other inherently dangerous or noxious substances
Foreign nuclear-powered ships and ships carrying nuclear or other inherently dangerous or noxious substances shall, when exercising the right of innocent passage through the territorial sea, carry documents and observe special precautionary measures established for such ships by international agreements. - United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea - Part II

Other
In 1984, New Zealand refused access to its ports by nuclear-weapons-capable and nuclear-powered ships of the U.S. Navy. This anti-nuclear policy negated established U.S. policy of neither confirming nor denying the presence or absence of nuclear weapons onboard U.S. vessels. New Zealand's policy also effectively prevented its cooperation under ANZUS. In August 1986 the United States suspended its ANZUS security obligations to New Zealand. Despite President George H.W. Bush's 1991 announcement that U.S. surface ships do not normally carry nuclear weapons, New Zealand's prohibition of visits by nuclear-powered ships has continued. GlobalSecurity.org

QUESTIONS:
1. In which country with nuclear powered submarines are even those subs barred from all of its mercantile ports?

2. When did President George Herbert Walker Bush first announce his initiative to offload all tactical nuclear weapons from all surface ships and submarines?

3. In what country was a bomb set off at a local square superficially injuring 3 sailors from USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) after its CO stated, "I cannot confirm or deny that possibility", referring to conveying nearly 100 nuclear weapons?

4. Based on official U.S. Navy documents, what other country alleged that a U.S. destroyer had loaded nuclear weapons aboard prior to arriving in their port during 1988?

5. Submarines have not been the only U.S. Navy vessels impacted by nuclear concerns. Earlier, a U.S. destroyer had been denied tug-boat assistance into an Australian port when members of the Fireman and Deckhands Union objected to servicing a nuclear armed vessel. Identify the destroyer (name and hull number), the year, and the port.

6. How many of you visited Naples on an SSN; your SSN, no doubt, anchored out. Does Italy still bar nuclear subs from docking in ports?

Answers: Sunday, 27 NOV 2011. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Monday, November 21, 2011

Poetic Justice 101

Persia's Pulse Re-taken
(A Thought Exercise in Farsi Farce)

I
ran's
R
ace to
O
wn
Nuclear
I
nventory
C
oncludes,

with an Electrifrying Mistake over Persia (EMP)

QUESTIONS:

Whose bunker busters would be unnecessary afterward?
When would an EMP accident ideally occur?
Will an Iranian scientist be blamed?
What will
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad say?
What will Hugo Chavez say?
What will North Korea say?
What will New Zealand say?

Submarines are always silent and strange.







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Friday, November 18, 2011

Three (3) Submarine Surprises - Mine, Yours and Ours

M.E.'s Surprise (UPDATE #1)

Speculation (link January 14, 2010): Wonder how Capt. Graf will be connected with submarines (sous-marins), can we guess? UPDATE: Not that Capt. Graf has been discharged, but M.E. finds implausible a future connection (outside of matrimony) she might ever have with submarines.


Your Surprise (UPDATE #2)

Associated Press (link November 18, 2011) The Navy's inspector general for the Atlantic submarine force confirmed it is investigating potentially widespread cheating, a review that began in August following a complaint that originated at the Naval Submarine Base in Groton. Prediction (today): Either the head of the investigation team or one if its members will be a nuclear-trained FEMALE officer, which is one of the primary reasons for the announced investigation.


Our Surprise (UPDATE #3)

Sunken Soviet Sub's Covert Mission Controversy (link March 03, 2011) A dispute exists over whether the wreck deserves further investigation. The Sweden's military does not, after investigation, rule out that there was a foreign submarine outside Gothenburg, western Sweden, in September 2011. QUESTION of the WEEK: What could be attracting these subs to Sweden ? ANSWER: Those who know are not providing that information.


Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Uh Oh!


Organ donors take note of Obama health care. The accompanying flowchart first appeared at M.E. back in October 26, 2008.

For a larger version click on and open the chart in a new tab.

In the first column of the chart is an alternative imagined for organ donors, whom we originally speculated:

When your organs become available earlier than necessary due to bureaucratic delays or surgical wait listing, your survivors will have little doubt who the favored recipients of available organs will be. First in line are the U.S.Congress, their relatives, select constituents, and esteemed federal employees.

Now, guess what? We apparently underestimated how aggressive the Obama administration would be as regards compulsory organ donations. From the beltway comes the prospect that families will be pressured to donate all available organs before their loved one has died, even if the patient expressly did not authorize nor wish to donate any organ.

Obama's "regulatory czar", Cass Sunstein, has pushed strongly for the removal of organs from those who did not give their consent to becoming an organ donor. And Tuesday the American Medical Association completed a four-day meeting in which physician delegates set policies and took a position on organ donations for HIV-positive individuals.

Why would that come up? In the run-up to a tight election, the latest Obama favored class has been exposed. According to the Center for Disease Control, you see, in the United States the AIDS Rate 50 Times Higher in Homosexual Men. Not to pick one favorites category alone, it is only fair to disclose the obvious:

First in line for your organs are the U.S.Congress, their relatives, select constituents (Solyndra, union officials, etc.), and certain federal employees. Left leaning associate justices appointed to the Supreme Court for life (e.g. Elena Kagan) will take precedence over conservatives (e.g. Clarence Thomas) in eligibility for lifetime extensions.

Finally, bureaucrats in line for healthcare decisions implicit in the above paragraph will have priorities obtained for their compliance accordingly.

Socialism is merely favoritism in disguise.

Submarines are always silent and strange.



















Welcome to the world of socialized medicine.




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Friday, November 11, 2011

Succession Intrigue from and upon Venezuelan Leader

President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela has just claimed his navy chased a foreign nuclear submarine away from Venezuela’s island of La Orchila north of Caracas.

1- How would Hugo's navy detect a nuclear submarine that wanted to remained undetected (submerged)?
2- If a foreign vessel was actually spotted on the surface, what excuse could Venezuela's military commander, conducting training drills near the island at the time, possibly offer for allowing it to escape? The ANSWER:
It was pursued. It escaped because it’s much faster than ours. The speed and size of the foreign submarine indicated “it’s a nuclear-powered submarine,” Chavez said.

3- Assuming the fast vessel really was a submarine, why conduct ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) on the surface? If not ISR, why conduct insertion on the surface? CONCLUSION: Not a submarine.
4- What kind of vessel was spotted? Possible ANSWER: A go fast boat smuggling drugs.
(they can out run most subs), and William Brownfield, U.S. assistant secretary of State for international narcotics and law enforcement, recently said illegal drugs trafficking through Venezuela were at an “explosive” rate.
5- According to former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Roger Noriega in a recent column for the InterAmerican Security Watch, Chavez’s cancer is spreading more quickly than expected and could kill him within six months.
6- In 2008 the US Department of the Treasury asked for Henry Rangel Silva's US accounts to be frozen on the charge that he had helped the FARC in narcotraffic activities. In November 2010, Rangel Silva declared that the military forces are "married to the political, socialist project" lead by Hugo Chávez in Venezuela. Shortly after that, Chávez promoted Rangel to General-in-Chief.

Reading between the lines above...
Chavez has apparently discredited Venezuela's military commander, Henry Rangel Silva in advance of the expected transition in Venezuela's top leadership. This is particularly noteworthy because Rangel Silva had taken part in Venezuela's 1992 military coup with Hugo Chavez and rose to power by expressing public confidence in Chavez, and only after the U.S. attempt to freeze his US accounts.

Meanwhile, Delegate to Venezuela’s National Assembly William Farinas implied for the public's consumption that the foreign submarine was another sign that a [foreign] “empire” [read "US"] sought to control Venezuela’s oil industry.

Has Rangel Silva been up to mischief with a foreign power? Is he hiding involvement in drug trafficking? Is he being supported by a foreign power to take over when Chavez goes naturally?

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Monday, November 07, 2011

Answers to 10/31/2011 Sub Mystery Questions

Relevant background for claustrophobia and Mexico City's proposed 980-feet deep, inverted-pyramid shaped, subterranean building can be found at M.E.'s original post here.

Congratulations to Tom Goering who answered 3 of these tough questions, and Contrary in Texas, who answered a fourth.

QUESTIONS of the WEEK ANSWERED:

1. The average MRI examination requires almost 50 minutes, more than enough time for extreme fear and anxiety to set in among claustrophobic patients. About what percentage of patients refuse to undergo MRI scans due to claustrophobic anxiety? ANS: About 5 to 7 % - source - Phobias: A Handbook of Theory, Research, and Treatment. Chichester; New York: Wiley, 1997.

2. What percentage of the world population in general is estimated to be affected by severe claustrophobia? ANS: Various studies indicate ranges between 4 - 30% - source - Hricak and Amparo 1984; Quirk et al 1989; Melendez and McCrank 1993.

3. Is there any difference in the frequency of claustrophobia between male and female populations? ANS: Yes; The frequency of claustrophobia in women is reported both as higher, but statistically insignificant, and as twice as high as for women as men. Sources - Rachman, 1997; Iris Eshed MD, Christian E. Althoff MD, Bernd Hamm MD, Kay-Geert A. Hermann MD- 3 JUL 2007

................................***********
Remaining questions refer to the 65 underground stories of this 980-feet deep, inverted-pyramid shaped, subterranean building proposed for crowded Mexico City.

4. How does the temperature gradient of the Earthscraper compare to that of a submarine at a depth 980-f00t depth? In the event that mechanical ventilation in the Earthscraper fails, would the natural temperature at the deepest be cooler or hotter than on the top floor of the structure at midnight? ANS: Hotter. Below ground geothermal conditions (gradient) cause a temperature increase at greater depths. Generally, for every 328 feet below ground, the temperature increases 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit. The bottom tip of the inverted, subterranean building therefore, would be surrounded by earth about 15 degs F hotter than the floors nearer the surface. For submarines, however, sea temperatures generally decrease with depth (thermocline). At a sea depth of 980 feet, average sea temperature is roughly 29 degs F cooler than at sea level.

5. What two types of catastrophic hazards connected with such an inverted building are most likely to be anticipated and safeguarded against by its architects? ANS: Standard fire suppression methods would be particularly problematical for occupants of deeper levels. A deluge of either water or fire suppressants could drown or asphyxiate such occupants, respectively. Also, any event requiring evacuation of all occupants would require multiple, independently energized means of rapid egress for those on lower levels. Sixty-five stories of stairs would be too challenging for 99.9% of the population to negotiate in a rapid manner. Would people with physical disabilities ever be allowed ten stories below ground level?


Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Saturday, November 05, 2011

Prelude: the Mother of All Fireworks

There are juicey stories behind some recent, ho-hum scientific news. Gender has been officially ignored by NASA and the US Navy. The Obama administration is setting up commercial space launch systems corporations to be subject to lawsuits when (not if) inevitable gender-based medical and psychological problems result from challenging space voyages.

Ensign Brandon Zoss, 27, a graduate from Lufkin, Texas, who previously served as an enlisted sailor, said some worry that women will not be able to perform the hands-on, physical tasks required of enlisted members. But, Zoss said, "There's no reason to think there's any doubt" that a woman can perform the same job as a male submarine officer. - 11/05/2011, the Day,com



In lieu of a politically inconvenient recommendation issued by NASA's Behavior and Performance Working Group (BPWG) Final Report May 1997 (from page F-10 here):

8. Research on gender with respect to behavior and performance on space missions needs to be assessed with respect to space crews, ground crews, families. [note: the adder "with respect to ground crews, families" seems very out of place; perhaps it was added in deference to female lobbying groups to make the main recommendation at minimally palatable. ]

Instead of such gender research, and while totally ignoring the gender problem of Russian (Note 1) and European Space Agency's (Note 2) tests, the Obama administration is placing women in submarine service for later extrapolation to space voyage behavior. Such political slight-of-hand is transparent, because there is no comparison. But don't take my word for this... these quotes should paint the missing picture for you:
Link
There are no reports of unwanted sexual advances, nor of actual physical violence, both of which marred an earlier experiment.
- Guardian UK

The six crew members of the Mars500 experiment - a 520-day simulation of space travel to the red planet - ended their voluntary isolation on Friday, greeting eager family members and the press in Moscow
- Reuters

A 420-day experiment in 2000 ended in drunken disaster when two participants got into a fistfight and a third tried to forcibly kiss a female crew member.


Having a woman on board would have certainly been good. You miss that, to be honest, said Italian electrical engineer Diego Urbina, one of the 6, all-male simulation participants. ... there were no scuffles as in previous experiments. It was like a normal life on board.

Why was no woman on board the toughest simulated MARs space experiment to date? One reason is this: A Bloody Nose, Sexual Harassment and a Deserter (after only 110 days) - Part 1

Notes
1 - Does Mars need women? Russians say no - 2/11/2005 , MSNBC. com
This week, the director of Russia’s top space medical institute told students that only men should be allowed on the first mission to the Red Planet, because women are too weak to endure the flight's rigors. His comments once again exposed the internal contradictions of a country that put the first woman into space while having the reputation of being the last European bastion of male chauvinism.


2 - Monkeys in a Can? - 2/ 21/2007, Accelerating Future Benny Elmann-Larsen, coordinator of physiology in human space flight at the European Space Agency (ESA), says psychological stress could be the biggest problem of all.
The human factor is the most uncertain factor, Elmann-Larsen said in an interview with AFP.

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Thursday, November 03, 2011

What happens to sidelined UK sub commanders? Two 'Captain Calamities'

3 NOV 2011 - "Captain Calamity" #1 -
Navy commander who crashed nuclear sub HMS Astute on Skye gets dream Florida post

The Navy commander who crashed Britain's newest nuclear submarine is now jetting back and forth to Florida at taxpayers' expense. Commander Andy "Captain Calamity" Coles lost his command of £1billion HMS Astute after running it aground off Skye a year ago. [color emphasis added] ... The Ministry of Defence confirmed that Coles was now part of a submarine project team, with a job involving regular US trips, but refused to give more details. Read it all. source

13 JUN 1969 - "Captain Calamity" #2 -
Subic Bay, Philippines - Royal Navy submarine, HMS Rorqual (S02) commanded by Lieutenant-Commander Rowan Gavin Paton Menzies accidentally rammed USS Endurance (MSO-435). The collision punched a large hole into Endurance's hull but did only minor damage to Rorqual. Lieutenant-Commander Menzies retired the following year, and stood unsuccessfully as an independent candidate in Wolverhampton South West during the United Kingdom's general election 1970. source

Gavin Menzies later published the controversial book 1421: The Year China Discovered America.

Scholars and navigators, including Su Ming Yang of the United States, Jin Guo-Ping of Portugal, Philip Rivers of Malaysia, Malhão Pereira and Geoff Wade of Singapore questioned Menzies' methods and findings in a joint message:[24]

His book 1421: The Year China Discovered the World, is a work of sheer fiction presented as revisionist history. Not a single document or artifact has been found to support his new claims on the supposed Ming naval expeditions beyond Africa...Menzies' numerous claims and the hundreds of pieces of "evidence" he has assembled have been thoroughly and entirely discredited by historians, maritime experts and oceanographers from China, the U.S., Europe and elsewhere.

The unstoppable Menzies then published his second controversial book,

1434: The Year a Magnificent Chinese Fleet Sailed to Italy and Ignited the Renaissance, which met with even harsher academic criticism.

Not everyone has been quite so critical of Mr. Menzies historical accounts:
“MENZIES’S BOOKS ARE TREMENDOUS. HE HAS DONE HISTORY LIKE YOU WOULD NOT BELIEVE. IT’S FASCINATING AND TURNS EVERYTHING UPSIDE DOWN.” - Glen Beck [not the Glenn Beck].


So what does Rowan Gavin Paton Menzies do nowadays, you ask? Well, as mentioned here, he is due to be interviewed THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3RD 1am-5am EST / 10pm-2am PST on the radio program Coast-to-Coast AM.

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Crew Experiences - Latest NEWS on HMAS Farncomb (SSG 74)

Operational failures for this vessel in the past two months have neither been unprecedented nor rare for its class. The 6 diesel-electric, Collins class submarines have been the subject of incidents and technical problems since the design phase, including major deficiencies in the first built subs, and ongoing technical problems throughout the early life of the class. These problems have been compounded by the inability of the RAN to retain sufficient personnel to operate the submarines — by 2008, only three could be manned, and from 2009 onwards, an average two or fewer have been fully operational. The resulting negative press has led to public derision perception of the Collins class.

Ill luck, inferior design, or lackadaisical maintenance efforts? The latest event on HMAS Farncomb (SSG 74) required the only submarine operating among 18 warships to abandon its participation in a five-power defense agreement (FPDA) exercise, which included 65 aircraft from Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia and the United Kingdom. How does one run such an exercise without the electric rabbit? Submarines are always silent and strange.

We sympathize with our fellow submariner volunteers and are immensely happy there no loss of life nor serious injury has been reported in these events:

Sep 10 2011 - Sailors feared worst as submarine HMAS Farncomb sank source
JUST after midnight off the coast of Perth, navy submarine HMAS Farncomb was slicing below the surface of a rough sea when its engines cut out.
For the 60 men and women aboard the Collins-class boat, the next few minutes would be among the longest of their lives. Like a Hollywood thriller, the sailors found themselves grappling with a double engine failure followed by a terrifying, powerless descent towards the bottom of the Indian Ocean, stemmed only by the cool actions of a veteran commander. (read more)

Oct 28 2011 - Submarine springs gas leak during exercise source
An Australian submarine's cooling system has failed during an military exercise, leaking refrigerant gas into the vessel.
Defence said on Friday the crew of HMAS Farncomb followed the standard emergency procedures and no one was hurt. (read more)


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